11 Best Market Meals Around the World

What better way to taste your way around the world than to sample the delicacies of the world's best food markets?

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Cazuela: La Vega Central, Santiago, Chile

Each day thousands of people pass through the stalls of La Vega Central, the 60,000 square foot market near the north shore of the Mapocho River in Santiago, Chile. Many locals stop at the market for lunch, where a bowl of cazuela, a rustic chicken stew, is a popular choice.

Sushi: Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo, Japan

You probably won’t find fresher sushi anywhere in the world than you will at Tokyo’s Tsukiji Fish Market. Sushi lovers line up as early at 5:30 in the morning to score a seat in the market’s most famous restaurants, Sushi Dai and Daiwa-sushi.

Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes: Eastern Market, Washington, D.C.

On weekends only, the lunch counter in Washington, D.C.’s historic Eastern Market serves blueberry buckwheat pancakes. Arrive early as the line often extends right out the door of the market.

Kebobs: Grand Bazaar, Istanbul, Turkey

It’s easy to work up an appetite at Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar, one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world. Several stalls within the Bazaar itself, as well as on its outskirts, serve up traditional Turkish kebobs.

Sausage on a Stick: Borough Market, London, England

Hungry shoppers in central London’s Borough Market, which is said to have been in operation for more than 1000 years, swear by the “sausage on a stick” from the Mountain’s Boston Sausages stall. 

Socca: Cours Salera, Nice, France

Socca, thin chickpea griddle cakes cooked over an open flame, are not to be missed when visiting Nice’s classic open-air market, the Cours Salera. Teresa’s is the most famous storefront.

Peameal Bacon Sandwich: St. Lawrence Market, Toronto, Canada

Toronto’s world famous peameal bacon on a bun is the signature dish at St. Lawrence Market. Thick slabs of the bacon, which has been rolled in yellow cornmeal, are the centerpiece of this beloved sandwich, available at Carousel Bakery.

Tapas: Mercado de San Miguel, Madrid, Spain

Renovated and reopened in 2009, Madrid’s Mercado San Miguel, not far from the Plaza Mayor, is less a traditional food market than it is a tapas market. Take a sampling of tapas from different stalls (we’re partial to the olives stuffed with tuna and pepper) to the tables and enjoy with a glass of sangria.

Prawns and Oysters: Sydney Fish Market, Sydney, Australia

While some vendors serve already-prepared seafood platters, others at the world’s third-largest fish market will cook your shellfish on the spot. Enjoy the views of the working harbor while you eat your meal.

Tea: Khan el Khalili, Cairo, Egypt

This souk is among the biggest and busiest in Cairo. For weary shoppers, nothing beats a strong cup of tea from Fisihawi’s Cafe.

Quesadillas: Bazaar del Sabado, Mexico City, Mexico

This busy Saturday market in Mexico City is more of a craft market than a food market, but many people visit just to sample the incomparable quesadillas at the market’s cafe, especially ones with zucchini flowers or huitlacoche (a black corn fungus).

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